New Web Players Released 11/19/2009

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blantonl

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Folks,

For our Web player platform. we have moved back to the previous player platform that we have always used, the "Wimpy" player. yes, that really is the name! :)

"Wimpy" finally updated their player to resolve some of the crashing issues. Established users will see that we have updated the skins... but it is the same player.

If you have problems, concerns, or feedback, please let us know in this thread. We are especially interested in hearing if the Web player crashes your browser.

Thanks, and most importantly... Have fun!!

Lindsay
 

mtindor

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Lindsay,

Does this mean that those people who are embedding the feed onto their own website will have this updated player available to them as well?

Mike
 

mdulrich

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It crashed my browser after 15-20 minutes of use. Firefox 3.0.11 on Win XP.
Are you aware that Firefox is up to version 3.5.5? Updating might help, but I haven't tested the new player in Firefox yet.

Correction, I ran in Firefox for an hour with no problems.

Mike
 
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GTR8000

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Crashed. I can't get it to run reliably for more than 10 minutes at a time. Latest version of Flash + FF 3.5.5 I guess they didn't fix the problems afterall, in fact it seems even worse now. :roll:

This is a real sore spot with a fair amount of my listeners, who are non-technical and rely on the utter simplicity of the "point-and-click" web player. Playing the stream in WinAmp or WMP may seem like a trivial task to most of us, but to some of my older listeners, it's complicated and confusing.

I know these flash players have become a thorn in your side, Lindsay, but as much as it frustrates you to have to deal with this, it's equally as frustrating having some listeners blame us feed providers for the unreliability of the web player. I hope you guys get this sorted out and we find a reliable web player soon enough, for everyone's sake. :(
 

djl998

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Yep, crashed for me too in FF 3.5.5. It ran for about an hour this time, but that was just delaying the inevitable.
 

blantonl

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This is a real sore spot with a fair amount of my listeners, who are non-technical and rely on the utter simplicity of the "point-and-click" web player. Playing the stream in WinAmp or WMP may seem like a trivial task to most of us, but to some of my older listeners, it's complicated and confusing.
Chris,

Windows Media Player is installed on practically every Windows computer out there. Choosing "Windows Media Player" as their player and clicking the speaker is just as easy as using the Web player.
 

GTR8000

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Chris,

Windows Media Player is installed on practically every Windows computer out there. Choosing "Windows Media Player" as their player and clicking the speaker is just as easy as using the Web player.
Trust me, you've never met some of the older guys I know who listen to these feeds! No kidding, the other night I spent 2 full hours on the phone with a guy out in Vegas trying to explain to him how to listen to a feed. Keep in mind also, there are countless combinations of operating systems and browsers, and of course all the "customizing" people do to their computers, and those still using crappy software like AOL to browse. The real fun begins when people wind up changing the MIME settings in browsers so the incorrect application associates with a file type, or by not having WinAmp set to associate with the .m3u file extension, etc etc etc. I don't mean to be argumentative here, but the web player is in fact easier to use than the other players. It's platform independent and requires only Flash to operate, and is truly 1-click-to-listen because it starts playing automatically, unlike the external players.
 

blantonl

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Trust me, you've never met some of the older guys I know who listen to these feeds! No kidding, the other night I spent 2 full hours on the phone with a guy out in Vegas trying to explain to him how to listen to a feed. Keep in mind also, there are countless combinations of operating systems and browsers, and of course all the "customizing" people do to their computers, and those still using crappy software like AOL to browse. The real fun begins when people wind up changing the MIME settings in browsers so the incorrect application associates with a file type, or by not having WinAmp set to associate with the .m3u file extension, etc etc etc. I don't mean to be argumentative here, but the web player is in fact easier to use than the other players. It's platform independent and requires only Flash to operate, and is truly 1-click-to-listen because it starts playing automatically, unlike the external players.
Agreed, but also keep in mind that architecturally, memory handling of HTTP MP3 streams has been problematic. I've test no less than 10 different flash MP3 players, rather extensively, and finding the combination of integration points to RR (playlists etc) and ones that don't crash due to memory problems, has been a challenge.

I've considered going the Java applet route, but those are pretty heavy clients and we'd have to sign the applet to get it to run without security warnings.... plus, it is buggy as well (but it shows alpha tags I'm told)

For now, the current player that we have is going to have to be it... it balances the ease of integration with a nice looking player and it works without crashing. The downside is that a very very small group of folks seem to have buffering problems with it, and due to it's design if someone starts and stops listening to the feed with the play / stop buttons they can get themselves in situations where they are replaying audio they've already listened to instead of resuming the live feed. The solution is of course to refresh the browser....

Some sites are using the Flam Flash player which looks nice and works well, however I'd have to reverse engineer their custom playlist process handling which is unique.

It's a balance...
 

GTR8000

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I feel your pain, believe me. I'm not venting at or towards you, you're doing the best you can with the resources that are out there. It's just my general frustration that no one can seem to write a Flash based player that works well for the RR application, without bringing a browser to its knees or "looping" audio because of whacky buffering issues.
 

SCPD

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Possible solution to the web player problem

This code was suggested to me by one of my listeners. I have set up a page to auto refresh every hour so the code that supplies the # of users and feed status updates, then embedded the code below (changing the server name and mount point of course). I don't know if there would be a way for you to integrate this into your Web Player popup and include the ads you want. Just a thought until things get ironed out - I know from another thread your working hard on the problem blantonl.

Code:
<center>
<embed name="MediaPlayer1" pluginspage="http://www.microsoft.com/Windows/MediaPlayer/" src="http://audio2.radioreference.com:80/[mount_point_goes_here]" type="application/x-mplayer2" volume="-300" showcontrols="1" autostart="1" width="280" height="46">
</center>
 

georgew0819

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little bug

The downside is that a very very small group of folks seem to have buffering problems with it, and due to it's design if someone starts and stops listening to the feed with the play / stop buttons they can get themselves in situations where they are replaying audio they've already listened to instead of resuming the live feed. The solution is of course to refresh the browser...
On a funny note that little bug drove me nuts earlier today. I had changed cables on one of my feeds and was listening to the weather to adjust the audio level. After getting it set and adjusting an antenna to get rid of interference, I resumed listening to my FD feed on the web player.

I then spent the next 20 or so minutes wondering why the weather channel was playing over my feed at various intervals. It drove me nuts, at one point I even had the scanner turned off and the player was still playing the weather channel. At that point I was really close to thinking either I was losing it or my equipment was posessed! I shut the scanner and the broadcast software down, restarted it on my streaming computer and on the other computer I logged off and back into Radio Reference after exiting out of and back into IE.

Now I sit here feeling like a total jack @$$ after reading this post and realizing all I needed to do was close and reopen the web player. Oh well, that's what I get for not reading all the posts in the forums. You never know what posting just may have information you need.
 
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